Risk Factors and Pathways to Imprisonment among Incarcerated Women in Victoria, 1860–1920

Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Australian Studies, 2018, 42 (3), pp. 268 - 284
Issue Date:
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Criminological studies have found that men’s and women’s pathways to imprisonment differ, with risk factors such as substance abuse, mental illness, socioeconomic circumstances and past victimisation more strongly associated with female prisoners. However, limited quantitative or longitudinal research exists on how the risk factors associated with female offending may have shifted over time. This article investigates the criminal careers and pathways to imprisonment of 6,042 women incarcerated in Victoria between 1860 and 1920, and the risk factors associated with subsequent recidivism. The findings suggest that, while many of today’s risk factors were present historically, there have been notable shifts across time.
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